The role of social networking sites in facilitating attendee's conference experience : a case study

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The role of social networking sites in facilitating attendee's conference experience : a case study


Author: Zhang, Ao Shuang
Title: The role of social networking sites in facilitating attendee's conference experience : a case study
Degree: M.Sc.
Year: 2014
Subject: Congresses and conventions.
Online social networks
Hong Kong Polytechnic University -- Dissertations
Department: School of Hotel and Tourism Management
Pages: ix, 102 leaves : illustrations ; 30 cm
Abstract: With increasing influence of the social networking sites (SNSs) in people's daily, many meeting planners adopted it as an important tool for marketing and customer relationship management. This is because the SNSs possess the functions that are exactly suited to cater some dimensions of attendee's conference experience. The major motivations to participate a professional association are interaction; networking and learning which are corresponding with the purposes of holding annual conferences. However the usage of SNSs in facilitating the interactions, networking and learning in the convention industry is under studied in the literature. Therefore the aim and objectives of this study are to explore how the use of online social network facilitates 1) the networking of conference attendees before, during, and after the conference; 2) the interaction of conference attendees before and during the conference; 3) the knowledge sharing and development in the conference. This paper adopted a qualitative case study of the IFITT 2014 annual conference, known as ENTER 2014. Two types of data are used to achieve the goal of the study. First is the collection of the communications on Facebook and Twitter before during and after the conference. Second is interview approach. Content analysis is applied to both data types using a deductive approach. The results indicated networking and interactions are well facilitated by Facebook and Twitter. However, the attendee's learning experience is less facilitated by the two platforms due to limited types of information shared and ways of sharing knowledge.

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